The Florida Commission for Independent Education has ordered the closure of the West Palm Beach campus of the Carleen Health Institute following the reported indictment of its owner. The indictment arises out of the FBI's Operation Nightingale, alleging Florida nursing school sales of fraudulent nursing credentials to thousands of aspiring nurses.
State nursing boards across the country are investigating nurses who hold credentials from programs run by the indicted school officials, including Carleen Health Institute of South Florida. Get skilled and experienced professional license defense attorney representation for your nurse licensing issues. Call 888.535.3686 or go online now to retain the Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team. Protect your nursing education, license, and career.
Carleen Health Institute Approval
Although currently closed by a State of Florida order, the Carleen Health Institute of South Florida had been offering a diploma program for home health aides, an associate's degree for licensed practical nursing, and a bachelor's degree for registered nursing. Carleen Health Institute (CHI) was offering its LPN and RN degree programs on the public representation that graduation would qualify the candidate to take the National Council Licensure Examination to practice nursing among its many other alumni at hospitals and other healthcare providers across the country. Carleen Health Institute was maintaining sites in West Palm Beach and Plantation, Florida, overseen by proprietor Stanton Witherspoon.
Carleen Health Institute Nursing Education
When you enrolled at Carleen Health Institute, you had good reason to trust that your pursuit of a CHI education would result in your nursing licensure and employment. Until the Florida Commission for Independent Education ordered Carleen Health Institute's campus closure, the Florida Board of Nursing had been accepting graduate names from CHI to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) for certification for LPN and RN nursing practice. CHI graduates were able to earn nursing licenses in states across the country to practice in hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare sites.
Carleen Health Institute Credentials Scandal
Early in 2023, the Department of Justice charged Carleen Health Institute's proprietor Stanton Witherspoon and more than two dozen other Florida nursing school officials with selling fraudulent credentials to thousands of aspiring nurses. The charging documents allege that nurses used the false credentials to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination, obtain licenses, and enter nursing practice at sites around the country. The charges seek conviction, incarceration, fines, and forfeiture of the alleged scheme's proceeds. The Department of Justice did not indict any of the nurses allegedly buying the credentials, only the school officials selling credentials. The FBI and HHS, though, did work with the charged school officials to create a list of nurses who allegedly received fake credentials.
Carleen Health Institute Licensing Impacts
The Department of Justice's criminal charges against Carleen Health Institute's proprietor and the State of Florida's closure order of Carleen Health Institute's West Palm Beach campus triggered state licensing boards to investigate the licenses of nurses holding Carleen Health Institute credentials. The Washington State Nursing Commission, for example, summarily ruled that Carleen Health Institute graduates do not meet the state's requirements for nursing licensure. The Texas Board of Nursing likewise published a list of the closed Florida nursing schools, including Carleen Health Institute, noting their involvement in the Operation Nightingale credentials scandal while declaring its intent to investigate graduates. Many other states followed suit, urged on by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. Nurses nationwide have lost their nursing licenses and employment if they are unable to prove the authenticity of their credentials.
Valuing Your Nursing Credentials
Trust in the value of your nursing credentials, whether earned solely at Carleen Health Institute or through a transfer of nursing credits to or from other nursing programs. Just because you've had some connection with a now-indicted individual doesn't mean that you received or relied on fraudulent credentials. You may have completed all the requirements for a valid and valuable nursing education. Indeed, if you took and passed the National Council Licensure Exam, then you've proven that you have the knowledge to practice nursing competently. And if you've been working as a nurse, then your employment further proves your skill and value. Don't give up on a great nursing career into which you have invested substantial time and resources. You know the value of your nursing practice to yourself, your family, your patients, and your employer.
Fighting Carleen Health Institute Credentials Issues
You also have a constitutional right to due process anytime you face a state licensing board action involving your nursing license. Your nursing license represents your protected property and liberty interest that the government cannot deny you without a fair hearing. Your state licensing board will have rules and procedures designed to protect you. Those protective provisions will include your right to retain and rely on the representation of a skilled nursing license defense attorney. Your retained professional license defense attorney can help you gather evidence proving the legitimacy of your credentials and your qualifications for nursing. Your retained attorney can also help you communicate, advocate, and negotiate with licensing officials and your employer's representatives.
License Defense for Carleen Health Institute Graduates
Get the help you need for your best outcome to Carleen Health Institute credentials issues. Retain the Lento Law Firm's premier Professional License Defense Team and national professional license defense attorney Joseph D. Lento to help you defend your Carleen Health Institute credentials. Call 888.535.3686 or go online now.